In a mur*der trial, a parrot was regarded as an unusual “key witness” when it was believed to have repeated the victim’s “last words.”
Martin Duram was shot five times with a.22 caliber hand-gun before he was slain in May 2015 at his Michigan home.
Prosecutors subsequently stated that his wife Glenna’s solitary gunshot wound, which she sustained while still alive, was evidence of a botched sui*cide attempt.
Their next-door neighbor was worried when he hadn’t heard from the couple, who had been together for 11 years, for two days. In court, they said that they usually talked every day. She finally went into the house and found their bodies on the floor of the bedroom. At first, she thought they were both dead, but when the police came, they saw that Glenna was still breathing.
Sgt. Gary Wilson went to check Glenna’s pulse and told the court that when he touched her, her eyes flew open and her body jerked, and she asked, “What are you doing?”
Two years later, a Michigan jury in Newaygo County took eight hours to decide that Glenna was guilty of first-degree mur*der.
The Detroit News said that police reports showed that the couple had been having money problems before the shooting, which were made worse by Glenna’s habit of gam*bling.
The mur*der weapon, a Ruger Single-Six, was found under the love seat by the police.
But a parrot was another thing that was almost a key piece of evidence.
Martin’s ex-wife Christina Keller took care of his pet parrot Bud after he died. She noticed that Bud started saying “Don’t [expletive] shoot” in Martin’s voice.
“I think it’s a piece of the puzzle,” Keller said on As It Happens.
“I believe it could be the last words.
“I truly believe, with all my heart, that most of that comes from that night.”
After it sent chills down her spine, Keller decided to record the parrot’s unusual phrase.
“It terrified me,” she said.
“I hear screaming, yelling and fear.”
The prosecution didn’t end up using the parrot in court, but at first they thought about it. At the time, Newago County Prosecutor Robert Springstead said, “There’s some evidence to support” Keller’s theory.
Keller also said, “I read the police report. About four neighbors said, “You need to talk to that bird.”
“I know it sounds crazy, but that’s how smart Bud is and how many people thought he saw this.”
Glenna asked for a new trial in 2019, but the state’s Court of Appeals said no. She said that her rights were violated when prosecutors used cellphone data as evidence in the case, but the court said no.
The Supreme Court told her the next year that she couldn’t appeal the decision, saying that they weren’t “convinced that the questions presented should be reviewed by this Court.”
The Cinemaholic says that Glenna is serving a life sentence at the Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility in Michigan’s Pittsfield Charter Township.